Am I weird?

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Ok so I know you are probably already thinking I am weird just by the post of this title! But something has been really bothering me the past few days and what better place to talk about it then on my blog, right?!

Two days ago as I went to Whole Foods with Claire I picked up some sushi for dinner that night and I was very excited to try it! This was the first night of the new year and my family was going over to my cousin's house for Chinese food for dinner since we were unable to go over on NYE because of the snow.

So anyways enough blabbing on, I knew they were ordering Chinese food which is definitely one of my fear foods. All day I was worrying what I was going to eat. To say the least I was stressing out all day. Since I knew they would be ordering Chinese I thought it would be appropriate and okay if I brought over my sushi for dinner. Am I right or am I wrong? Please tell me what you think!

When my mom saw my Whole Foods bag she asked what was in it so I told her, and then she began to flip out on me! The whole car ride over she began saying I was so weird and was asking me why I couldn't eat Chinese food and all this other stuff. So, I know she thinks I am weird! It was a horrid car ride over and the whole time over my cousins house she was mad at me.

Once we got over to my cousin's house I looked around to see what they ordered. They had lo mein, teriyaki beef & teriyaki chicken skewers, stir fry veggies, scallion panacakes, crab rangoons, fried rice, white rice, and chicken fingers. Now last year on NYE I clearly remember having no problem eating ANY of these foods, but not this year. It is strange how things can change in one year. I used to love Chinise food when we had it but now it is one of my fear foods!

I was hoping they had some kind of steamed veggies and chicken, but no such luck :( If I were there earlier when they placed the order I would have made sure they ordered something I would have eaten.

So after all I had my sushi I bought at Whole Foods and enjoyed every single bite of it! Even though my mom was terribly disgusted by me for not eating the Chinese food like everyone else.

So I wanted to ask you all what you thought I should have done in this situation?



Elisabeth said...

You're not "weird," you're struggling with ED! Most people don't understand how difficult it is, so please don't let others dictate how you feel about yourself, ok sweetie?

That being said, I think this is the kind of situation you need to tackle head-on, rather than thinking about after the fact. You said that Chinese is one of your top fear foods, yet by bringing your own sushi, you gave yourself an easy out. Fear foods will be fear foods until you reincorporate them into your diet and realize, through normal eating habits, that they will not make you gain weight. I'm no expert, just a recovered anorexic myself, but honestly girl, you've gotta try harder than that. Instead of bringing your own meal, I think it would have been a huge accomplishment to go to your cousins and eat small portions of whatever you felt most comfortable with. Some white rice, stir-fried veggies and chicken skewers would have been difficult, but in my experience you have to try try try until it becomes easier!

Your mom cares about you, and she wants to see you healthy. I'm sure she doesn't expect you to eat a huge portion of beef teriyaki or fried rice, but I can understand why she freaked out a little. In order to recover, you have to push yourself, and by bringing your own food, you really didn't even try. Beating ED means eating comfortably what is offered in social situations!

I've been a (lurking) reader for awhile, and trust me, I know how hard it can be to overcome this. But it seems like you've been letting yourself slip back into old patterns and dismissing challenges by labeling them as "fear foods." Remember how awesome you felt over the summer when you ate veggie pizza or whole-wheat pasta? Dig deep girl, we're all rooting for you and I KNOW you can overcome this- you just gotta challenge yourself :)

Big hugs,

Emily said...

I would have done the same thing! You should never have to eat something you don't want to, especially foods drenched in sugary sauces like so much chinese food is!

Anonymous said...

Aw, what YOU want to eat. Everyone has their preferences AND those preferences change. Plus, it's not like you weren't eating because Chinese food made you recognized your anxiety and solved the situation! I think you did a great job, and not only did you make a choice that was perfect for was the healthier choice, as well!
<3 Jil

*Andrea* said...

that's definitely hard. i would have done EXACTLY what you did. however, being called weird or feeling weird is one of the worst feelings - especially if from a parent. maybe you should explain to your mom that you still had a balanced, healthy meal and that it was important for you in order to feel comfortable. the most important thing is that you enjoyed your friends/family, not what type of food you eat :)

Leianna said...

I think it's mor of shes worried for you and wanting you to let go. I know when I was wat that stage in my eating disorder I did th same things as you and my mom was pissed as well because I needed to gain serius weight! Think of it as love, maybe not now but for the future.
Don't be afraid of Chinese food too, even though it may seem really bad for you most dishs are full of veggies and the sauces are so yummy. Just drink lots of water too, because of the sodium sometimes.
I hope this helps and not trying to sound like you are weird, just still working through the tough times, which I've been through too much as well:)

Anonymous said...

Hey there!
So, in response to your situation- I can relate from the past, with either avoiding eating at places with my 'fear foods,' or just not eating anything and instead having something more familiar or comfortable. However, I have learned that in order to progress in recovery you have to push yourself to go ahead and eat the fear food so that it loses its power and you have to do it repeatedly to break the rules the eating disorder sets for you. Rather than calling bringing your own sushi to dinner weird, i would say it is disordered. You said it yourself that last year you used to love those foods- so chances are you probably still do, but your ED is preventing you from enjoying them. Its a vicious cycle to get out of, but the only way to free yourself from it is to step up to the plate...literally I guess ;)
Hope that helps, and hope I'm not sounding judgemental, just my two cents.

Annie said...

Hey Jenna, but I know how this sit. feels so i thought Id give my opinion. When my fam first started notcining my E.D. they would make comments ALL THE TIME about me eating something different from them, or my being difficult about what we ordered, or had to eat on a specific night, etc. Finally, I explained to my parents that it was easier for me to eat something i was "comfortable with" rather then try to force myself to eat a fear food, which would then lead to me cutting back the next day, or over exercising, or just stressing about it like I would. once they understood, or at least tried to understand, why I wasnt eating the same food as them, it got a little easier.

Im not saying that my fam. doesnt still make comments, its sometimes hard for them to get why certain foods are "harder" then others, but they at least dont yell and scream anymore.

Hope this helps, your doing awesome, and Id choose sushi over chinese any day!

Anonymous said...

I totally understand it being one of your fear foods...and it may not have helped that you didnt have control over what was ordered as well. But I would have said, take a little, maybe even pick the veggies or whatever it is that you like out of the things that they ordred...and then eat that and have your sushi as well. It WILL help you to branch out! I wouldnt label you as weird, everyone has their own eating habits...but as far as ED goes, I would really encourage you to at least "try" to nibble on things you can feel comfortable with. as well as have what you brought.
Im proud of you for going for the sushi! It looks like you have really been switching it up as far as things you have been eating, and that's great. keep on trucking girl. Dont limit yourself, if it tastes good, EAT IT! It only makes life that much sweeter :)

Im hear for ya if you ever need to vent, I know how hard it can be! keep going, and you'll do great! :)
Happy sunday girly!

Christina said...

I don't think that's weird at all! I would have done the exact same thing as Chinese Food is also a big fear food of mine also.


Tasty Health Food said...

Aw, Jenna. :( I think your mom is just disappointed that ED was stopping you from eating Chinese food. Bringing your own food to places is just... not weird, but definitely ED related. I hope you get through this well!

Kate G. said...

Im sorry love but it IS weird.

"I was hoping they had some kind of steamed veggies and chicken, but no such luck :( If I were there earlier when they placed the order I would have made sure they ordered something I would have eaten."

^^^that right there is NOT jenna speaking, that is the loud voice of your ED. please please please start seeing a counselor :( girl im so worried about you!!

Julie said...

Be honest with your mother about your struggles, admit you need extra support and even though it is hard-get the extra support. Go to an IOP program while you are home. Meet with your team-or set up a team. Have a family meeting and be HONEST that you aren't doing ok. You have to be honest with yourself first though. I hope you will be. You deserve better, and can do better-you just need help. You should see if you can go to IOP at Laurel Hill, you're in Massachusetts and it is wonderful. Even just for a couple weeks-the support helps counter the ed shit. Seriously. -J

Julie said...

one other thing, a sushi roll alone (I'm guessing you got a roll) definitely doesn't meet "dinner"-doesn't matter what your meal plan is. When I was on a maintenance meal plan, if I had sushi for dinner I had to have 2-3 rolls (6 pieces each, depending on what was in it) and a shashimi, and either miso soup or seaweed salad (I'm salivating thinking about it). Even now when I go out for sushi I get, well a ton. I can see your mom's concern, because I doubt you had enough to equate to a dinner. Especially if you didn't know the exchanges. What was in the rolls? J
PS I haven't been commenting but I thought I would because you haven't talked about food and I wanted to give some support about sushi, rather I wanted to give you a reality check. I hope you will seek some extra support.

Anonymous said...

hey jenna, i have been reading ur blog for a while and think that u r inspiring for your recovery! I want to tell u that as a recovered anorexic i have recieved the comments about eating in a so called "weird manner" , even coming from those who love me. But ur not alone, i dont think anybody can understand what we go through and what makes us feel safe unless they have been through it. If that is what helps u then who cares if its different. Keep going strong!

taylor said...

i think its part of recovery, sure, youre gonna get weird reactions from people but its better than NOT going or going and NOT eating, both of which cause even more attention(: so no, i dont think youre weird :D hope your holiday was great anyways! new year, fresh start

Jess said...

This is a tough situation. I think your mom was just upset that you were not partaking in the chinese, like you had last year. She probably expected you to and when she saw the WF's bag, she might have felt offended that you couldn't eat their food. I totally understand the fear of Chinese, as I had it once. I do not think you are weird for not eating it, but I want to challenge you to maybe next time bringing the sushi but also partaking in some of the chinese. Maybe have your sushi but also have terriyaki chicken and veggies? I'm not saying you were wrong in your decision making, as some people just do not understand, but I think you need to remember that fear foods will remain fear foods if you do not try to eat them!

I don't think you are weird :)

<3 jess

Jenna said...

Thank you soo much for all of your comments and advice on what I should have done and things to work on!

Anonymous said...

aww girl you are def not weird! your momma just doesnt understand-she may have thought it was rude but i think you should eat what you want to eat. i do believe this was an ED behavior..because you DID say that you wouldave eaten chinese..but you will also learn from this! dont sweat big deal..tommo=new day

Kate G. said...

Hey girl just wanted to apologize for my comment earlier, it was hurried and i didn't offer much advice other than see a counselor. Which is obvious but not enough.
I just got so immediately worried and wrote the first things i thought w/o being constructive!

Anyway, i think there is a lot of sound advice, but i think it is truly important to talk to a professional. As supportive as the blog world can be it is nothing compared to someone who is trained to help you.

PS you totally don't have to post this comment if you don't want!! :)

Kate G.

Lo said...

its not weird, but maybe pushing yourself to eat fear foods will help ur recovery more so, than relying on things u know are safe like sushi. You could have partaken in eating chicken skewers, or beef which are lean and grilled meats...rice is awesome, as are stir fried veggies. I think ur mom was frustrated and doesn't actually think u are weird----people say things they dont mean when they are frustrated. Challenge yourself girlie :) have a wonderful week dollface!!!

Anonymous said...

You're not weird at all! Yes, it'd be ideal if you could partake in the "normal" food that everyone else was eating without ED thoughts guilting you up, but at this point you're just not ready. I think it was wise to prepare for the dinner by picking up something that you're comfortable with AND is a nourishing meal. I wouldn't approve if you skipped out on dinner altogether, but I don't see what your mom was flipping out about!

Anonymous said...

It's not you being wird, it's ED...

Just wanted to let you know that I think it's great you're opening up about this and accept the feedback from others. I really hope you'll do something with it. You can do this! Just have faith and do the right things: next time you'll enjoy a good portion of the Chinese takeout and not even think about having 'safe foods' instead. There's no such thing as bad food, only bad illnesses like ED. Stay strong Jenna!

xxx Julia (Taste of Living)

Anonymous said...

Hey well you couls have easily not even had brought sushi and been scared of the Chinese food and just not have eaten, but you did not which is AWESOME!!! However I believe that we I am making progress in recovery I am uncomfortable, eating safe foods or repeated foods all the time is usually making me be at a standstill in recovery. I Mayeb be gaining lbs., but I am not getting better mentally because going out and eating in public where the food is not prepared in front of me or something still would scare me. Challenge yourself to be uncomfortable!!!

Megan said...

I think it's less about beign weird and more about admitting that your decision is reflective of your ED, not of maknig a "healthier" choice. It worries me to see people applauding your decision and saying that it's healthier. I think its good that you recognize that the reason that you couldn't/wouldn't eat it is taht it is a fear food, instead of just pretending you dont like it/dont feel like it. Being able to enjoy a food you (not your ED) likes with your family is an enjoyable and key part of life that it's sad to have to miss out on! As long as you recognize that you're avoiding it as a fear food, I think that's good. Taknig small steps to make fewer and fewer foods "scary" is how you'll make progress. Good luck!!!

Anonymous said...

jenna, i am so glad that you a) wrote about this & opened up and b) that people seem to be giving you some honest, constructive & important feedback. i am just going to reitterate what many others have already said- you are NOT "weird" but you are simply struggling from an eating disorder (ok, it's not simple..but you get what i mean). it is such a hard thing but i just feel like you have been struggling for so long & not necessarily getting the help you deserve or need. I completely understand what you feel ilke, i htae those kind of situations but it is so important to be able to be like a 'normal' person in those kind of situations and simply eat some of the food, even if you don't feel 100% comfortable. it is alla bout moderation. chinese food is ok if it is portion controlled. i know you can do this, you can beat ed :) just get the help you need & take care of yourself. you are a beautiful & sweet person and deserve the best!!


*Naomi* said...

girl, you are not wierd AT ALL. although I have to agree with some of these other commenters in saying that this is slight ED behaivor. I am not a fan of chinese food either, mainly because of the unhealthy options at a family gathering when you dont choose what you order and also just not a fan in general BUT in this situation I would have gotten some sushi but saved it for later. at the table I would have picked at some food and 'enjoyed' it as much as I can, focusing more on the company and my family. LAter, when everyone was done I would have eaten some sushi.

DO you find yourself in situations such as this alot? hang in ghere girly! and you are not wierd AT ALL!!!

Sherry G said...

Oh my goodness the same thing happened to me! I was in a family gathering situation and we were all to pack lunches. I decided I would bring sushi because I had a sample of it at a whole foods store and loved it. When it was time for lunch and I brought it out, all of my extended family made fun of me. It was actually quite horrible. I don't know why they thought they had to make me feel so bad about eating it. I was nervous about the day already and what I was going to eat, so that's why I brought sushi unlike the lunchables and brownies everyone else would be eating. It felt "weird" like you did at the time, but looking back, why should I have felt weird? I guess I'm past it now, but it certainly showed me a side of my family I didn't want to see=(

Thanks for the post girl=)))

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